The British Business Bank has announced multiple new lenders added to the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). Today, the British Business Bank has revealed the approval of the Allied Irish Bank (GB)/AIB (NI), ThinCats, Paragon Bank and IGF. These four lenders will join 48 existing CBILS accredited lenders. CBILS was launched to provide financial support to smaller businesses (SMEs) across the UK that are losing revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
ThinCats is the most recent Fintech added to the list. ThinCats began its existence as a peer to peer lender but has since morphed into a balance sheet lender no longer accepting retail money. ThinCats provides credit to smaller firms with loans ranging in size from £1 million to £5 million. Since launch, ThinCats has originated over £640 million in loans.
According to the Bank, more than 80% of the UK’s smaller businesses have a relationship with CBILS’ 50+ accredited lenders. The British Business Bank reports that it is accelerating at the pace of onboarding new lenders to further extend the scheme’s reach.
It was originally announced at Budget that an initial £1bn of government-backed lending would be available through CBILS. The government subsequently announced that it would be a demand-led program, providing whatever the market needs.
In addition to CBILS, there is the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS), which is designed to provide finance to mid-sized and larger UK businesses with turnover above £45 million. The Bank has also accredited 10 lenders to provide term loans and/or overdrafts. These are the Bank of Scotland, Barclays, Clydesdale Bank & Yorkshire Bank, Danske Bank, HSBC, Lloyds Bank, NatWest, Santander, RBS and Ulster Bank.
Keith Morgan, CEO, British Business Bank, commented on the addition of the newly approved lenders:
“Accredited lenders have continued to see an incredible demand for CBILS, so the Bank is helping to meet that demand and provide even more choice for smaller businesses by approving additional lenders for accreditation to the scheme. The announcement of 14 new lenders for both CBILS and CLBILS means these newly accredited lenders will be able to deploy vital funding and get additional finance flowing to smaller businesses across the UK as quickly as possible.”
UK Business Secretary Alok Sharma described these loans as an essential part of the wide-ranging package of support the government has put in place to help UK businesses.
“I am delighted to see more lenders offering loans which will, in turn, help even more businesses access the funds they need.”
The Bank said it continues to review applications from a wide range of lender types – from PRA-regulated banks, to platform lenders, debt funds, invoice finance lenders, asset finance lenders, and responsible finance lenders.